Skip to comments.Village invited to test cheap, clean nuclear power (Galena, Alaska))
Posted on 10/21/2003 3:28:48 PM PDT by Liberal ClassicEdited on 07/07/2004 4:49:06 PM PDT by Jim Robinson. [history]
A Japanese corporation wants to thrust the Interior community of Galena into international limelight by donating a new, unconventional electricity-generating plant that would light and heat the Yukon River village pollution-free for 30 years.
There's a catch, of course. It's a nuclear reactor.
(Excerpt) Read more at adn.com ...
After the death of my grandfather, a book in his library caught my eye. It was called Before It's Too Late A Scientist's Case For Nuclear Energy by Dr. Bernard L. Cohen 1983. My grandpa worked in defense plants during world war two as an electrical engineer, due to poor eyesight and an arthritic hip. He was a quiet man who always encouraged me to read and learn about science. I took this book home because the title caught my eye, thinking what could be so good about nuclear energy.
The contents of this book were nothing short of astounding. Instead of radiation being the boogeyman that is unsafe in any dosage, the truth is we live in a very radioactive environment. The atmosphere does sheild us from the worst, but we are constantly being irradiated, penetrated by particles, and absorbing them. The objection to nuclear power is primarily one of public fear, fear orchestrated by the so-called 'environmental movement' and corroborated by the alamist media. Nuclear power is no more dangerous than any other form of energy production in terms of risk and pollution, but it has the advantage of supplying our needs for millenia, instead of carbon fuels.
Let me close with the words of Tom Paine:
"A thousand years hence (for I must indulge a few thoughts), perhaps in less, America may be what Europe now is. The innocence of her character, that won the hearts of all nations in her favor, may sound like a romance and her inimitable virtue as if it had never been. The ruin of that liberty which thousands bled for or struggled to obtain may just furnish materials for a village tale or extort a sigh from rustic sensibility, whilst the fashionable of that day, enveloped in dissipation, shall deride the principle and deny the fact.
"When we contemplate the fall of empires and the extinction of the nations of the Ancient World, we see but little to excite our regret than the mouldering ruins of pompous palaces, magnificent museums, lofty pyramids and walls and towers of the most costly workmanship; but when the empire of America shall fall, the subject for contemplative sorrow will be infinitely greater than crumbling brass and marble can inspire. It will not then be said, here stood a temple of vast antiquity; here rose a babel of invisible height; or there a palace of sumptuous extravagance; but here, Ah, painful thought! the noblest work of human wisdom, the grandest scene of human glory, the fair cause of Freedom rose and fell."
Good news: implementation of nuclear power is at least being considered.
Bad news: it was developed in Japan, not the U.S.
Yeah, all those huge American reactor accidents despoiling the landscape. Killing the wild life and mutating our children.
Oh, right. Ted Kennedy has killed more Americans with his car than the civilian nuclear power industry in the U.S.
"And what if something goes wrong?" Buske asked. Nuclear power plants don't usually have small accidents. "If it goes bad, it tends to go really, really bad," he said. "One hopes nothing will go wrong, but one wants to ... make sure it's all insured."
Is the author quoting Buske or is the author expressing an opinion or fact? I would seem to me that "Nuclear power plants don't usually have small accidents." is not part of the interview with Buske, at least since it isn't in quotes.
The truth is that most accidents or equipment failure at nuclear power plants are minor, just as they are with other power plants. Yet another opinion slipped in as fact.
Small correction Nuclear power is
no more far less dangerous than any other form of energy production in terms of risk and pollution,
BTW, We are not losing our technological edge in this technology, we are years behind the last time I read anything on this. Europe is working on generation 4 reactors and we are basically twiddling our thumbs.
I fear we will never garner the political will to rectify this until gas is $4 per gallon. Like Europe.
If a number of these improved plants were installed in California instead of those based on natural gas, it could amount to a massive tax cut and would be a rocket boost to the economic potential of the state. Natural gas prices would drop and that would help the other regions of the US too.
Looking at its compact size, I keep thinking of the ones used in aircraft carriers which are virtual cities of 5,000 moving all over the world. To help sell it here, I think that US Energy dept should use regular sailors from the carriers to vouch for its safety and note that in its 50 year operating span, the carrier will only have to be refueled one time.
If they standardize and mass produce these mini reactors, I wonder if they can get energy costs down even further so that it would dramatically change the economic landscape for the US and the world.
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